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Marilize Legajuana

The War on Drugs is a failure (in ’09 Obama decided to stop calling it the ‘War on Drugs’ as it was “counter-productive”). I don’t think anyone who isn’t paid by the government can disagree with that statement. Honestly, I have a hard time believing anyone can make a rational argument for the War on Drugs, given how much money is spent on it. How much money, exactly? Oh, not a lot. Just to the tune of about $500/second. You think I’m shitting you? Take a look:

War on Drugs Clock

That’s an iPad2 every second, boys and girls.

Concerning the actual subject of this post (marijuana, if you missed the punchline) a whopping 89 percent of all cannabis law offenses are possession only. Given that the U.S. arrests almost 1 million people a year for cannabis violations, that means approximately 750,000 people are arrested each year simply for having marijuana in their possession.

Perhaps the most telling example is the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s own website, detailing their Top Ten ‘Facts’ on drug legalization. A lot of it I consider bullshit all the way around, like when they say 95% of Americans don’t use drugs. HAH. If you honestly believe only 1 in 20 people in the US use drugs, you’ve got a problem.

But this post isn’t about drugs in general. This is about marijuana. ‘Harder’ drugs(coke, crack, meth, heroin, LSD) are used by fringe numbers in our society compared to weed. There’s no disputing that weed is America’s favorite illegal drug.

Now, I wouldn’t be writing this post if I thought marijuana was the Schedule I substance the federal government classifies it as. Schedule I controlled substances, if you didn’t know, are supposed to have the highest potential for abuse, be the most unsafe, and are completely devoid of medical use. This includes Heroin, Ecstasy, Quaalude, and for some reason Marijuana. At the other end of the spectrum, we have Schedule V, where the drugs with the lowest potential for abuse are. Personally, I think marijuana should be placed in Schedule IV or V.

Cocaine, methamphetamine, morphine, ketamine, Valium, and Vicodin are all supposedly less dangerous than marijuana. METH is less dangerous than WEED? Are you fucking batshit insane? Anyone who has seen the effects of the two drugs on people or much less tried them can very quickly establish the sheer wrongness here.

Don’t mistake me. Marijuana isn’t innocent, either. It’s a drug. It’s not always safe. No drug is always safe. This includes our favorite legal drugs. Say hello to caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol. All three of those can reasonably kill you if you take too much of them. Marijuana, however, has never killed anyone. This alone is compelling evidence for me. But what’s really retarded is that marijuana was only intended to be a Schedule I drug TEMPORARILY.

In 1970 the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare (now the United States Department of Health and Human Services)’s Assistant Secretary of Heath, Roger O. Egeberg, recommended that marijuana be left as a schedule I drug simply because there was a void of knowledge about what marijuana did. This is understandable. It was the end of the 60’s, a lot of drug information was not known yet. However, in 1972, the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse stated,

[T]he criminal law is too harsh a tool to apply to personal possession even in the effort to discourage use. It implies an overwhelming indictment of the behavior which we believe is not appropriate. The actual and potential harm of use of the drug is not great enough to justify intrusion by the criminal law into private behavior, a step which our society takes only ‘with the greatest reluctance.”

I’ll even save you the trouble of looking through the commission for this quote. It’s right fucking here.

Nixon ignored the study, however, and re-ignited the War on Drugs. Nixon was a complete buffoon, down to the last. This I believe fully. I would almost go so far as to blame Nixon for the 39 years now that marijuana has been a Schedule I controlled substance when it clearly ought not be.

Americans have been getting arrested for personal use of something that was supposed to stop being a crime THIRTY NINE YEARS AGO. Since then, we’ve seen generations of people grow into these ridiculous notions about how dangerous and horrible marijuana is for you while people have been jailed, fined, and imprisoned over it.

The truth is, marijuana shouldn’t be illegal. Obviously, the government can’t, won’t, and shouldn’t APPROVE use of it – but this overwhelmingly ignorant oversight and stigma that marijuana is somehow worthy of all the bluster that Nixon started is a complete load of shit. Fortunately, it seems like the tide has been turning in America anyways. More and more states are reconsidering marijuana laws and examining its medical use. Overall, I’m simply disgusted that our government was/is so lackadaisical about adhering to their own advice and prone to leaving mistakes as they lie – seemingly unconcerned with the massive impact their laziness has. They’re supposed to be a fucking government, after all.